20 Things to do to kick off the year

They say hindsight is 20/20, but why can’t we look forward with some clarity? Even simple tasks like buying a planner or rearranging your furniture can get you looking into the new year with a new perspective. Start 2020 off on the right foot with these 20 things to do to get yourself organized and prepped for success. 


  1. Pre-Spring cleaning: Relieve the winter slump with a nice clean home. And I don’t just mean wiping down the counters - dust those baseboards! Mop that floor! A deep clean will get 2020 started off on the right foot. 

  2. Plan it out: Whether you use Google calendar or an old-fashioned paper planner, take some time to write out your winter term schedule. Include classes and work shifts, of course, but consider even scheduling study breaks to be fully set for success.

  3. Get outside: While everyone loves a cozy winter spent inside, it’s always getting fresh air can help calm you and clear your mind. Bundle up and breathe in a fresh new year.

  4. Schedule a dentist appointment: You know you’re overdue for one!

  5. Adopt a plant: Most renters don’t allow fur babies, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get something to take care of. There are plenty of plants at local nurseries looking for homes.

  6. Start that TV show: We all have that one show or movie that we’ve always wanted to see but haven’t gotten around to. Watch it now, before the year really takes off!

  7. Catch up with friends: You’ve probably all been apart for the break, so schedule a date to catch up! Take turns telling the best stories from your holidays over a meal or a drink. 

  8. Rearrange your furniture: Simply moving things around can make your home feel like new.  

  9. Volunteer: Helping out your community is always rewarding, so start off on a positive note that you can carry with you throughout the year. 

  10. Learn how to meal prep: Meal prepping is a great Sunday activity that saves you money and is usually healthier than eating out. Take care of yourself this year by making it part of your weekly schedule. 

  11. Change up your home scents: I know you’re still burning that apple-scented candle you’ve had since October. Switch it up with wintery scents like pine and birch or cranberry. Christmas may be over, but your house can still smell like it!

  12. Clean your backpack: It’s good to purge those old papers and granola bar wrappers at least once a term.  

  13. Get to the gym (just once): Every “new year, new you” article will tell you to set fitness goals, but I know it’s easier said than done. The hardest part is taking the first plunge - so do it! Just going once will ease some discomfort, and can be the start of a healthy new habit. 

  14. Clean your closet: Whether you’re pulling out your puffy coat or doing a full purge, the new year is a perfect time to decide who you want to be and what you want to put out into the world. Sell your clothes for some extra pocket cash or donate them to a charity near you.  

  15. Become a “yes” man (within reason): We can all find excuses for not going on that trip, spending time with friends or applying to that internship. Kick off 2020 by practicing saying “yes” - just go for it! 

  16. Take down your holiday decorations: You don’t want to be that person who still has Christmas lights up in February. As fun and festive as the holidays are, taking down your decorations will help you transition into the new season. 

  17. Delete social media apps: Even if just for a week or two, try going without one (or all) of the social media apps that take the most of your time. Deleting apps will prevent you from constantly checking your socials, and force you to look up every now and then!

  18. Organize your desktop: Chances are you’ve accumulated numerous files, memes and screenshots on your computer’s desktop over the course of the term. Clean it up to start fresh. 

  19. Reflect: Think back on the last year and reflect on everything you’ve accomplished. You’re killing it!

  20. Make your own list: What do you want to accomplish this year? Writing down your goals and setting deadlines can help make your goals feel tangible.